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The One Ring Forums: Off Topic: Off Topic:
It's the occasional reading thread!

Lily Fairbairn

Nov 20 2021, 3:30pm

Post #1 of 4 (1198 views)
It's the occasional reading thread! Can't Post

Wow, Off Topic is moving fast all of a sudden!

In the last week I caught up with a couple of magazines and started a book on paper. It's The Sentence is Death, by Anthony Horowitz, one of his mystery novels with himself as the main character, paired with an imaginary oddball detective named Hawthorne. This one starts with Horowitz at the filming of a scene from Foyle’s War, an episode that I remember seeing. The blending of his real life with his fictional life is a clever conceit but I find it annoying. However, the book is well-written and the mystery intriguing, so I just keep telling myself it's written in first-person and try to ignore those flashes of narcissism. Smile

I started listening to a library e-audiobook of The Joy and Light Bus Company, umpteenth installment in Alexander McCall Smith Ladies No 1 Detective Agency series. I enjoy Precious Ramotswe's musings on life and culture enough to carry me through what are almost plot-less novels with their repertory company of characters. In this one, Mr. Matekoni goes to a business seminar where he encounters an old school friend, and Mma Potokwane is concerned about a new arrival at her orphanage, a teenage girl exploited by one of Gabarone's wealthiest families. McCall Smith gets in some very pointed comments on contemporary economic issues.

I'm still listening to a traditional mystery novel, Hunting Shadows, by Charles Todd. Rutledge has covered a lot of ground in the Norfolk fens and accumulated a lot of evidence, but so far he hasn't yet nabbed a mysterious sniper.

Here's wishing our 'sibs in the U.S. a lovely Thanksgiving weekend, full of family, feasting, and peace!

So what have you been reading?

Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?
Where is the helm and the hauberk, and the bright hair flowing?
Where is the hand on the harpstring, and the red fire glowing?
Where is the spring and the harvest and the tall corn growing?
They have passed like rain on the mountain, like a wind in the meadow;
The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow....

(This post was edited by Lily Fairbairn on Nov 20 2021, 3:31pm)

Forum Admin / Moderator

Nov 20 2021, 6:37pm

Post #2 of 4 (1182 views)
The Plantagenets - The Kings who Made England, by Dan Jones [In reply to] Can't Post

Jones is a historian and in this book he's giving an overview of every reign from Empress Matilda (who married Geoffrey Plantagenet) up to the schism that split the houses of Lancaster and York.

He's very good at not bogging his narrative down in the details, but rather highlighting the decisions each king made that laid the foundation for the England that exists today. It's an easy and interesting read.

Celebrimbor: "Pretty rings..."
Dwarves: "Pretty rings..."
Men: "Pretty rings..."
Sauron: "Mine's better."

"Ah, how ironic, the addictive qualities of Sauron’s master weapon led to its own destruction. Which just goes to show, kids - if you want two small and noble souls to succeed on a mission of dire importance... send an evil-minded beggar with them too." - Gandalf's Diaries, final par, by Ufthak.

Fantasy novel - The Arcanist's Tattoo

My LOTR fan-fiction

(This post was edited by Ataahua on Nov 20 2021, 8:07pm)


Nov 22 2021, 12:15am

Post #3 of 4 (1151 views)
Grave Reservations by Cherie Priest [In reply to] Can't Post

who, I realize, wrote the Boneshaker series I enjoyed some years back. This is a new direction for her: her protagonist is "an inconsequential psychic" (SNL reference about a psychic who can only predict minor things like coffee spills) who gets roped into helping a detective with a cold case. I didn't find her very likeable, the detective was a cypher, but I liked the bar she and her friends hang out in. Overall a bit meh but okay. EXCEPT: the author lives in Seattle, but clearly has NEVER learned how to drive around the city. The psychic and the detective are forever going here or there and it always takes them 30 minutes - there are so many paragraphs devoted to this that I want to send Priest Nora Ephron's essay on "The Girl who Fixed the Umlaut" https://www.newyorker.com/...who-fixed-the-umlaut. And I can tell you why it always takes them so long: no matter where they start out and where they are going, they get on "the interstate." For example, her office is in Columbia City, which is south of downtown on a major arterial called Rainier Avenue. When they want to go to Leschi, the easiest thing would be to go straight north on Rainier to Yesler and hang a right. OR they could go directly east to Lake Washington Boulevard and then north. Ten minutes either way. But no, they go WEST to get on the interstate. Makes no sense! She is actually a friend of a friend and I am tempted to offer her "how to get around Seattle" lessons. Not quite as bad as Stephenie Meyer thinking people can drive straight east from Forks to Shelton over the tops of the Olympic Mountains or not noticing that there's a six-mile-wide strait of water between Western Washington and Canada, but come on!

Finished the first two of Jodi Taylor's Chronicles of St. Mary's time-travel series. Rollicking good fun. I hoot out loud a lot; her characters have cornered the market on witty repartee and Max--the main protagonist--delivers asides that are hysterical. As well, Taylor can chill you to the core with just a few words, as when she takes us inside the mind of Jack the Ripper. (I'm still shuddering.) Superb writing, inventive premise, and I'm so happy there are many more books in the series for me to devour.

A friend just gave me "White Tears Brown Scars" which, she warns me, is going to be an uncomfortable read, but I am tough enough to handle going outside my comfort zone and being challenged, I hope.

I am a dreamer of words, of written words.
-- Gaston Bachelard

* * * * * * * * * *

NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967

Hamfast Gamgee
Grey Havens

Dec 7 2021, 6:57am

Post #4 of 4 (783 views)
Finished my Admiral Thrawn book [In reply to] Can't Post

Interesting, not quite the ending I might have expected. I think I will now re-read another Star Wars book which I should finish before christmas.


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